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I am a 3rd generation geek. Grandpa worked with IBM systems in the early 1960's. Mom still teaches classes on productivity applications. I have been using UNIX since 1993 (I was 15 years old).

Beginning in the year 2000 I started playing with electronics. My motivation was to make blinky clothing for safety during my first Burningman (2001). A friend suggested that I figure out how to use a microcontroller to make LEDs and EL Wire blink. I accepted the challenge and have been designing my own hardware for the last seven years.

At first I struggled. Being a open source enthusiast limited my options on microcontroller development environments. I used Linux with Microchip PIC processors and learned to program in assembly. This was quite tedious and literally took me years to become comfortable with. Later I switched to Mac OS/X and soon after started using AVR microcontrollers for my development. Finally I could use C as the programming language and have much better debugging tools.

Today I make a new project at least once a month. No longer am I limited to blinking lights or wearables. My projects have progressed into human implants and even flame effects. More recently I have been working on planet saving projects. Buidling a hotel from waste materials, making grow lights out of LEDs, and even a temperature monitoring system for my veggie oil car.

20120113 - EEWeb Interview - Mikey Sklar - Featured Engineer